LLB (Hons) Law with Criminology - University of Portsmouth
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LLB (Hons)

Law with Criminology

UCAS codeM1L6

full time3yrs

placement option1yr

The study of criminal law in a stimulating environment

Course Overview

Why take this course?

Our Law with Criminology course applies law to topics concerned with criminological theory and practice. 

However, you won’t just study criminal law, you’ll actually experience it through full-blown unscripted mock trials involving law, criminology, drama and forensic students from all over the University.

This course achieved 100% student satisfaction in the 2017 National Student Survey.

What will I experience?

On this course you have the opportunity to:

  • undertake a one-year placement working in a paid full-time role
  • put your legal knowledge into practice in ‘real world’ situations by working in one of our internal clinics (currently a small claims clinic and a generalist advice clinic) or by advising clients in one of our external organisation partners such as British Red Cross or Portsmouth Mediation Service.

What opportunities might it lead to?

Our LLB courses are accredited by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and Bar Standards Board. This means graduates can progress to the Bar Professional Training course or the Legal Practice Course which are the traditional routes to becoming a barrister or a solicitor.

However, you have the option of taking the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx) papers in your final year, which gives you the opportunity to obtain its Graduate Fast Track Diploma together with your qualifying law degree. After graduating this will enable you to apply for work as a legal executive or paralegal and following three years of qualifying employment, you can apply to be admitted as a Chartered Fellow of the Institute of Legal Executives.

The benefits are clear:

  • an opportunity to obtain relevant employment straight after graduation without the need for further study or a Training Contract
  • a recognised professional qualification in addition to your degree
  • as a Chartered Fellow of the Institute of Legal Executives, you have similar rights and opportunities of partnership as a solicitor


Sarah King, LLB Law with Criminology student

I chose to study law and criminology to fulfil my long term ambition to become a solicitor specialising in crime.

Sarah King, LLB Law with Criminology student


Law and Criminology

Find out what our students say about studying at Portsmouth, including:

  • Putting their knowledge into practice in real and mock situations
  • Practical hands-on opportunities to extend experience and practical skills
  • Lecturers with practical experience in the subjects

Browse all courses in Law and Criminology

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Structure & Teaching

Year one

The first year provides you with an understanding of current developments in the legal profession and the legal services market. You’ll also be studying some topics relating to criminology.

Core units in this year include:

  • English Legal System
  • Contract Law
  • Criminal Law
  • Public Law
  • Understanding Criminology
  • Criminal Justice

Year two

In this year you will study realistic legal problems within the field of criminology. You’ll also have many opportunities to learn from experiencing law in practice as a volunteer in one of our pro bono projects.

Core units in this year include:

  • Land Law
  • Substantive Law of Tort
  • Questioning Criminology
  • Key Issues in Criminal Justice
  • Research and Professional Development

Options to choose from in this year currently include:

  • Employment Law
  • Family and Child Law
  • Police, Law and Community
  • Intellectual Property Law
  • Language
  • Commercial Law
  • Advocacy Practice and Theory
  • Jurisprudence and Ethics
  • Medical Law
  • Streetlaw
  • White Collar crime
  • Law of Succession

Year three*

By this stage, you may have just completed a year of employment. You’ll return to your studies with relevant business experience and apply this to either a legal dissertation or project, or alternatively take The Reflective Practitioner Course, where students can achieve credit for gaining practical experience of the legal system.

Core units in this year include:

  • Equity and Trusts
  • EU Law
  • Equality and Human Rights
  • Contemporary Criminologies

Options to choose from in this year currently include:

  • Company Law
  • Family and Child Law
  • Intellectual Property Law
  • CILEx Level 6 Practice Papers
  • Public International Law
  • Advocacy Practice and Theory
  • Commercial Law
  • Employment Law
  • Jurisprudence and Ethics
  • Medical Law
  • Law of Succession
  • Streetlaw
  • White Collar crime

*This course is also available as a 4-year sandwich (work placement).

We use the best and most current research and professional practice, alongside feedback from our students, to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional units may not run every year. If a unit doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative unit.


We place a lot of emphasis on student support and we aim to provide a stimulating and academically challenging learning environment. You will encounter a range of teaching methods, from lectures, seminars and tutorials to more practical learning experiences. This can include negotiation in our replica mock courtroom and real-life clinical legal training.

The time you spend in teaching activities may depend on the units you select. As a guide, students on this course last year typically spent their time as follows:

  • Year one students: 24% in lectures, seminars and similar learning activities, 76% studying independently and 0% on work placement
  • Year two students: 22% in lectures, seminars and similar learning activities, 78% studying independently and 0% on work placement
  • Year three students: 19% in lectures, seminars and similar learning activities, 81% studying independently and 0% on work placement


Assessment is varied, with examinations forming an important, but not exclusive, part of the units you choose. Here’s how we assess your work:

  • examinations
  • coursework essays
  • presentations
  • participation in mock trials
  • written moot arguments

The way you’re assessed may depend on the units you select. As a guide, students on this course last year were typically assessed as follows:

  • Year one students: 43% by written exams, 7% by practical exams and 50% by coursework
  • Year two students: 23% by written exams, 12% by practical exams and 65% by coursework
  • Year three students: 52% by written exams, 5% by practical exams and 43% by coursework
Video Description

As part of her Law degree, Anu chose to do practical work experience with Portsmouth's Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB). We visit Anu at work to see how she's getting on, what the role involves and how it feels to put her learning into practice.

Tutor's view


Claire Sparrow

This qualifying law degree allows you to get to grips with two different but related subjects. It is a great choice for those who are interested in exploring issues in the criminal justice system as well as the law.

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Facilities & Features

Mock Courtroom

You can be part of our full blown mock trials and moots in our mock courtroom. The £1 million development is an exact replica of a crown court, complete with dock, witness box, public gallery, jury room and interview rooms. Gain firsthand experience of a realistic court setting.

Volunteering at the Citizens Advice Bureau

We are proud to be able to offer some students the opportunity to train as advisers or mediators, and use their new skills to help others. Each year a small number of students train as Citizens Advice Bureau advisors in order to specialise in offering debt and legal advice to the population of Portsmouth.


We pride ourselves on the good reputation we have in the area. Maintaining good links with the Court Service in Portsmouth allows us to facilitate court visits, marshalling and even work experience. Our mentoring programme also brings in members of the legal profession who work in local solicitors’ firms, for the government and in a variety of other contexts and links them with you.

University Library

Modern, comfortable and a great learning environment, our library offers a wealth of information including 400,000 books, DVDs, maps and thousands of online ejournals and newspapers. Many electronic resources are available anywhere, 24/7 and our friendly staff are always on hand to help.

Budgeting for your studies

There are extra costs associated with studying, which you will need to consider when planning your expenditure.

Recommended texts:
If you wish to purchase recommended texts, rather than borrow from the University Library, the average price is £50-£60. You may be studying up to 6 units a year, each with a standard recommended text.

General costs:
We recommend that you budget £75 a year for costs of photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.

Final year project:
If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose to develop.

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Careers & Opportunities

Career prospects

Career prospects
Where next?

Studying this course, means you may wish to become a lawyer. But, due to its combined nature an even wider variety of careers will be open to you.

You could become a lawyer perhaps working for the Crown Prosecution Service, consider working for one of the criminal justice agencies (e.g. the police, Prison Service, or Probation Service) or criminal justice research is also a very rewarding career with several organisations requiring researchers in this area.

A number of our previous Law with Criminology students also go on to seek graduate entry to the police force.

Roles our graduates have taken on include:

  • designated detention officer
  • legal clerk
  • paralegal assistant
  • business development executive
  • paralegal

Work experience

Work experience
Employment boosting opportunities

Boost your degree with the opportunity to undertake a one-year placement working in a paid full-time role which offers progression and a suitable level of responsibility. You will benefit from the contemporary business experience that employers demand, making you highly employable upon graduation.

We offer the option to become fully trained volunteer advice workers for the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) as part of the course. You may also participate in other schemes run under the umbrella of our innovative Pro Bono Initiative. These include:

  • our in-house  generalist legal advice or small claims clinics
  • volunteering with Portsmouth Mediation Services
  • other schemes include working with Swain and Co. Solicitors and the British Red Cross

Career planning

Career planning

To make sure you take the right steps on your career path, we’re here to give you help, support and advice throughout your study. Even after you’ve graduated, we continue to give you support for up to five years.

Employers tell us that they want graduates to be able to demonstrate certain skills when they come out of university. Our courses take account of this. We make sure we prepare you for employment through work-related learning, projects, placements and working in simulated environments that are designed to prepare you for the working world.

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Apply now or visit us

Apply for 2018 entry

To apply, you'll need this course's UCAS code, which is at the top of this page, and the University of Portsmouth institution code – P80.

Apply now

After you apply, we'll invite you to an Applicant Experience Day where you’ll get to speak to lecturers and meet your future classmates.

Open Days for courses starting in 2019

Come to an Open Day and explore our course facilities, tour the campus and have a look around our halls of residence.

Book your Open Day

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to our terms and conditions as well as the University’s policies, rules and regulations. You should read and consider these before you apply.

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